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The Grihya Sutras, Part 1 (SBE29), by Hermann Oldenberg, [1886], at


1. Now how he should mount an elephant.

2. He goes to the elephant and touches it (saying), 'The elephants’ glory art thou. The elephants’ honour art thou.'

3. He then mounts it with (the words), 'With Indra's thunder-bolt I bestride thee. Make me arrive safely.'

4. Thereby it has also been declared how he should mount a horse.

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5. When he is going to mount a camel, he addresses it: 'Thou art the son of Tvashtri; Tvashtri is thy deity. Make me arrive safely.'

6. When he is going to mount a he-ass, he addresses it: 'A Sûdra art thou, a Sûdra by birth. To Agni thou belongest, with twofold sperm. Make me arrive safely.'

7. A path he addresses: 'Adoration to Rudra who dwells on the paths. Make me arrive safely.'

8. A cross-road he addresses: 'Adoration to Rudra who dwells at the cross-roads. Make me arrive safely.'

9. When he intends to swim across a river, he addresses it: 'Adoration to Rudra who dwells in the waters. Make me arrive safely.'

10. When going on board a ship, he addresses her: 'The good ship' (Vâg. Samh. XXI, 7).

11. When going to cross (the river), he addresses (the ship): 'The well-protecting' (Vâg. Samh. XXI, 6).

12. A forest (through which he is wandering) he addresses: 'Adoration to Rudra who dwells in the forests. Make me arrive safely.'

13. A mountain (which he is going to cross) he addresses: 'Adoration to Rudra who dwells on the mountains. Make me arrive safely.'

14. A burial-ground he addresses: 'Adoration to Rudra who dwells among the Fathers. Make me arrive safely.'

15. A cow-stable he addresses: 'Adoration to Rudra who dwells among the dung-heaps. Make me arrive safely.'

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16. And wheresoever else it be, let him always say, 'Adoration to Rudra.' For the Sruti says, 'Rudra is this universe.'

17. If the skirt (of his garment) is blown upon him (by the wind), he addresses (that skirt): 'A skirt art thou. Thou art not a thunder-bolt. Adoration be to thee. Do no harm to me!'

18. The thunder he addresses: 'May the rains be friendly to us; may (Indra's) darts be friendly to us—may they be friendly to us which thou throwest, O killer of Vritra.'

19 19. A howling jackal he addresses: 'Friendly by name' (Vâg. Samh. III, 63).

20 20. A shrieking bird he addresses: 'Golden-winged bird who goest where the gods send thee! Messenger of Yama, adoration be to thee! What has the Kârkârina told thee?'

21. A tree that serves as a mark (of a boundary, &c.), he addresses: 'May neither the flash of lightning (destroy thee), nor axe nor wind nor punishment which the king sends. May thy shoots grow up; may rain fall on thee, in safety from the wind. May fire not destroy thy root. Blessing on thee, O lord of the forest! Blessing on me, O lord of the forest!'

22. If he receives something (given to him), he accepts it with (the formula), 'May Heaven give thee; may the Earth accept thee.' Thus (the thing given) does not decrease to him who gives it, and what he receives increases.

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23. If boiled rice is given to him, he accepts it with (the formula), 'May Heaven, &c.,' and he partakes thereof twice. with (the formulas), 'May Brahman eat thee!'—'May Brahman partake of thee!'

24. If gruel is given to him, (as above) . . . . three times with (the formulas), 'May Brahman eat thee! '—'May Brahman partake of thee!'—'May Brahman drink thee!


366:6 The he-ass has twofold sperm, because he begets both asses and mules. Taittirîya Samhitâ VII, 1, 1, 2.

367:19 The play on words is untranslatable; 'jackal' is sivâ, 'friendly,' sivah.

367:20 I do not know the meaning of kârkârinah. Gayarâma takes it for a genitive standing instead of an accusative, and explains it by asmadbâdhakam.

Next: III, 16